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MLSA Region 9 Aquatic Invasive Species Survey Highlights Need for Close Lake Monitoring

By March 6, 2013 No Comments

by Sarah Litch
ML&SA Region 9
Representative

The Water Quality Committee of the Glen Lake Association sent out a survey in January 2013 to the Lake Associations, Watersheds, and Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore in Michigan Lake and Stream Associations Region 9, which includes Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, Manistee, Missaukee and Wexford counties, to determine the aquatic invasive species that they have identified in their lakes and along their shorelines.

The graph shows the percentage of lakes reporting the presence of each of the invasive species that they have in their lake/watershed.  The graph is based on the reports from 36 lakes.  Only 1 of the surveys sent out was not returned. View the graph by clicking here

Only two lakes within ML&SA’s Region 9 besides those in the Glen Lake Watershed do yearly aquatic invasive species surveys, reported to Michigan Lake and Stream Associations Aquatic Plant Survey data base, of their lakes for aquatic invasive species so there is probably under reporting for many of the lakes

Glen Lake has Zebra mussels as do 66.67% of the lakes reporting.  One of the biggest threats to our watershed is  Eurasian water milfoil, which was reported by 36.11% of the lakes, though not yet found in the Glen Lake Watershed. It is an aggressive grower and spreads rapidly.  The treatment to eliminate it can be very expensive if it is not detected early. An Aquatic Plant Survey has been done for the past ten years in our watershed to facilitate early detection and rapid response if Eurasian milfoil is found as well as any other invasives .

A survey and treatment for both Coltsfoot and Eurasian Phragmites along the shoreline is done each year in our watershed. Curly leaf pondweed has been found in Big Glen Lake and harvested.  Since the Glen Lake Association has an active survey/treatment program for both aquatic and shoreline invasives we are in fairly good shape in relation to other lakes in District 9.  Treatment of Zebra mussels is also being actively explored and may be part of our survey/treatment of invasives in the future.

The constant threat of the introduction of aquatic invasive species into our watershed by recreational watercraft is shown in this table. View table by clicking here